This course introduces the burgeoning field of feminist science and technology studies. How should we theorize the relationship between race, gender, sexuality and the sciences? How has science grown to be the center of our cultural visions and imaginations and what does that mean for our futures? Drawing on the literature of the history, sociology and philosophy of science the course first examines some of the foundational theories pertaining to feminism, gender and science. Then, using examples from the eighteenth, nineteenth and twentieth centuries, it looks at the way science and technology are embedded within a social and historical context. Finally, the course examines a series of modern debates and case studies relating to claims about biological differences of gender, race and sexuality, genetic technologies, reproductive biology and technologies, eugenics, environmental feminism, alternate energy, climate change, and women’s health. Students will have flexibility in picking case studies that interest them. This is a discussion course and students are expected to participate. One class meeting per week.
Spring semester. Visiting Professor Subramaniam.